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Format, Fans and Frequency
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rcar
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Joined: 31 May 2001
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 08, 2001 2:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I do a comic book using flash. Are people turned off by flash or is it not a traditional approach? It seems everyone is doing html. I have not come across a site using flash for their cartoons.

Next, because I do my comics in flash, they take a long time to finish. I get a new issues out in three to four weeks. Do fans get bored with a site that takes that long? Would it be better to do something on a weekly basis? I thought of having a comic book page HTML format. Then once a week I could upload a new page. I also thought of having an email list to alert my fans to a new posting.

Any thoughts on formats and frequencies?

Randy Carboni
http://www.mermbut.com
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Randy
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Joined: 16 Apr 2001
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Location: Pittsburgh

PostPosted: Fri Jun 08, 2001 4:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

"I do a comic book using flash. Are people turned off by flash or is it not a traditional approach? "

Right now there is no traditional method for web comics. Use whatever you like. However, realize that Flash requires a plug-in and not everyone has it installed. Which means that you are going to have fewer readers.

"It seems everyone is doing html. I have not come across a site using flash for their cartoons. "

HTML is easier to learn than Flash is. Most of the artists producing for the web know how to create the art in Photoshop/Illustrator or whatever, and HTML is an easy way to lay out the comic.


"Next, because I do my comics in flash, they take a long time to finish. I get a new issues out in three to four weeks. Do fans get bored with a site that takes that long? Would it be better to do something on a weekly basis?"

Yes it would. There is power in repetition.

" I thought of having a comic book page HTML format. Then once a week I could upload a new page."

This is a better idea than once a month.

" I also thought of having an email list to alert my fans to a new posting. "

Just remember that people detest spam.


"Any thoughts on formats and frequencies?"

I feel that the frequency has to be high to maintain an audience. I believe that longer than a week and the audience loses interest. The exception to this would be a popular artist, writer, etc. As for the format, that is your decision.

Later,
Randy

http://www.subatomiccafe.com
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lylebclarke
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Joined: 15 Apr 2001
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Location: New Zealand and Denmark

PostPosted: Fri Jun 08, 2001 10:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think most webcartoonists start off scanning things in and then displaying them on an HTML page. Doing cartoons in Flash is too big a jump for there to be many Flash cartoonists without there being oodles and oodles of pen and paper/scanned cartoonists first, especially seeing as you need an expensive bit of software and a none to cheap drawing tablet.

That being said, there must be at least a couple of oodles worth of online comics out there, because comics with at least some Flash content are starting to appear. Try:

http://www.confusionperfume.com/
http://warpfactor10.keenspace.com/

Neither of these two are really taking advantage of the "flash" side of Flash, but check out the way this next one does, being both bilingual, AND flipping the canvas:
http://section972.keenspace.com/

As far as frequency is concerned, the more regular you are, the more visitors you have. My own comic runs fairly sporadically, jostled aroun don the borders of my life. When I'm daily for a month or so, readership goes through the roof, then I'll have a few times a week ho-hum period (like now) and it'll drop a lot, and then other times I don't update for months and I'll only get hardcore readers popping back once a week or so, just-in-case.

I've seen your comics, I think you should keep doing them in Flash (if you want to) but make the episodes much much shorter, and feed them out more often, for example weekly. You are currently running about 7 scenes per comic, that's nearly two months worth of weekly content, and from what I can see they are taking you two months a peice, so it should work out fine.

Cheers
Lyle
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John2two
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Joined: 15 Apr 2001
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Location: Monroe, Oregon, USA

PostPosted: Fri Jun 08, 2001 1:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Lyle is shy about tooting his own horn, but from your post, Mr/Ms Carboni, it appears you are unaware that Lyle started using Flash a couple months ago for his excellent strip at mooloo.com.

(Yeah, I'm on the list of Lyle's hardcore fans.)

John
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lylebclarke
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 13, 2001 3:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've just found another flash comic-like thingee (i.e. includes both text and pictures) to add to this thread.

http://www.freebeegeebees.com

It is IC'ish, and has background music (not looping), basic animations, and page backgrounds vary according to characters and scenes.

Don't expect to have your world rocked, but if they can keep it up at one 'websiode per day' I'll take my hat off to them anyway.

Another point is that it pushes itself as an 'in your e-mail inbox' comic, rather than a 'visit my website comic'.
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lylebclarke
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 13, 2001 3:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

ACK!

I just realised the above link has hyperlinks too, sometimes leading ous episodes, and sometimes leading to advertisers websites, whereupon it disabled my back button for two minutes to give me a chance to sign up to the service of the advertiser it sent me to.

Scary.
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John2two
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Location: Monroe, Oregon, USA

PostPosted: Thu Jun 14, 2001 3:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Today I followed the link'o'the day from UserFriendly(.org) web comic to a site with a full-blown anime serialized movie, done in Flash 5. It's http://www.brokensaints.com

You'll notice I did not describe this as a comic. I did so because it uses Flash to control the presentation over time, avoiding the McCloudian use of anything user-controllable to map time. (In my case, this was frustrating. It appeared to mis-estimate the speed of my computer, so that the segment that it said would take 8 minutes took more like 45. If it had really moved thorugh all that in 8 minutes, it might not have bored me to tears.)

Anyhow, the art's beautiful, and there's probably an OK story in there somewhere.

John
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rcar
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Joined: 31 May 2001
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 14, 2001 3:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I went to the freebeegeebees site. Fortunatly I didn't get stuck in the advertisments. It is a unique site, but not really a comic strip or book kinda thing. Good luck to them though.

I also visited the broken saints site. Really well done art. The whole thing looked great. However, by the time I actually found an episode to view, I was bored and left the site. You need to get to the stories faster. It was easier to find the bios and rants than the stories.
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rcar
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 14, 2001 6:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Oh, by the way. Thanks for the tips on my web site. I have gone to much sorter edisodes and I'm going to update weekly.
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Tim Mallos
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Joined: 23 Apr 2001
Posts: 354
Location: Brighton, Michigan

PostPosted: Thu Jun 14, 2001 7:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Broken Saints is pretty cool, but geeze, enough with the atmosphere stuff. Dialog? Narrative action? I'm sure they come in, but I didn't get to it. Liked the style, but I too grew bored and left.

It's interesting how the use of ambient sound and music really made the characters seem incredibly SILENT to me. I am assuming there is not recorded voice for dialog later in the story.

Anyway, quite cool, but it didn't hold my interest. Story is everything...

Edit: ok, ALMOST everything :wink:

[ This Message was edited by: Tim Mallos on 2001-06-14 19:35 ]
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lylebclarke
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 14, 2001 9:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes Tim, thanks for pointing out that observation, how silent characters suddenly 'sound' when background sound is applied. I have also found the same to apply with 'ambient animation' (e.g. trees ever so slightly shimmering) which seem to make anything that does not move seem very lifeless and statue like.
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